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Current time:0:00Total duration:3:03

Writing: Syntax — Harder Example

Writing: Grammar

Video transcript

- [Instructor] Valerian, a flowering herb, is considered an invasive weed by the state of Connecticut, which banned it in 2004. It has been used as a medicinal plant for centuries. Which choice most effectively combines the underlined sentences? All right, so, we know from this, this stem here, that what we're working with is a syntax question. So, it's asking us to combine these two sentences where the period is, and it's asking us to do that in a way that is effective and grammatical. So it's not just about finding something that makes sense, it's also about finding something that is the most elegant option. So let's go through these answer choices. A, a flowering herb used as a medicinal plant for centuries, valerian is considered an invasive weed in the state of Connecticut, which banned it in 2004. Nothing about that looks off to me, let's hang on to that for later. Okay, option B, considered an invasive weed in Connecticut, but it was banned in 2004, valerian is a flowering herb that has been used as a medicinal plant for centuries. So what weirds me out about that, about this option, is the but it was banned in 2004 part. Because of the use of the word but. Like, but is usually used as a disjuncture, right. Here's a thing that happened, but here's something different. So, considered an invasive weed in Connecticut, but it was banned in 2004, doesn't make sense to me because these two things go together. It's considered an invasive weed and it was banned. Like it was banned because it was considered an invasive weed. So I'm gonna say this doesn't make sense to me, I'm gonna cross it off. Option C, a flowering herb that has been used as a medicinal plant for centuries, Connecticut banned valerian in 2004, considering it an invasive weed. This is a modifier-placement error, this is a dangling modifier. I'm gonna show you what I mean. This, this descriptive phrase here, a flowering herb that has been used as a medicinal plant for centuries, is being used to apply to the state of Connecticut. When we know from context that it's actually talking about valerian. We know that Connecticut is a U.S. state, it's not a flowering herb. So let's cross this one off, we know that's not right either. D, considered an invasive weed, Connecticut banned valerian. Now we know from this last example, this one's doing the exact same thing. Connecticut, considered an invasive weed, I don't think so. It's a very fine state. But let's read through just to make sure. Connecticut banned valerian, a flowering herb that has been used as a medicinal plant for centuries, in 2004. Yeah, so this is committing the same error. So we're gonna cross that off. Let's go back, review. A flowering herb used as a medicinal plant for centuries, valerian is considered an invasive weed in the state of Connecticut, which banned it in 2004. Check for subject-verb agreement, looks good to me. These commas make sense to me. Nothing seems out of place, so I'm gonna go with A. Remember, when you're combining sentences in a syntax question, you're also looking for something that is logically and rhetorically sound.